Instant remedies to deal with migraine
If you’ve ever suffered a migraine, you must remember what it’s like: the crippling, throbbing pain in your temples, the swells of nausea, your inability to think clearly nor make the slightest of movements, and an aversion to light and sound. You’re not alone – over 15% of people suffer from migraines.
What to do then, when you’re hit by one of these terrible attacks? There are several instant remedies, which can help with the pain and discomfort of an ongoing migraine, and help you get through the day. These instant migraine relief tips may be able to offer some respite so you can do more than just crawl into a dark bed and wait it out.
- Turn Off the Lights
Photophobia, or a heightened sensitivity to light, is a common symptom of migraine, and bright lights can only serve to make you feel worse during minor headaches to migraines. So, don’t hesitate to turn the lights down and the curtains closed.
Sensory stimuli can aggravate migraines, so slipping into darkness is a good way to prevent more discomfort and grab yourself some recuperation time. Wear a pair of sunglasses, whether indoors or out, if you can’t lie down somewhere comfortable. These lenses can protect you from sunlight as well as indoor lights.
- A Cup of Coffee
This may sound like ill advice, for everyone has heard before that drinking too much coffee can precipitate headaches. However, research has shown that a small amount of caffeine in the form of a coffee or tea can soothe the pain of a migraine.
Caffeine is a potent vasoconstrictor, which can narrow the blood vessels in the head and provide some relief in a migraine. This only holds true for a small amount of caffeine, though.
- Adding Some Pressure
Despite the already incredible amount of pressure and pain in your temples, some light pressure in the right spots may actually help with the pain. When a migraine first occurs, some light pressure in the craniosacral system may help by releasing some of the tension in the cranium. There are several books and online guides for using acupressure to relieve headaches, so do look through them to apply these techniques as pain-relief during your next attack.
- Hot or Cold
When facing most musculoskeletal injuries, we often turn to either hot or cold therapy – and evidence shows that this can be helpful in migraines, too.
Simply choose whichever method works better for you, and placing an iced or heated pack on your head can make all the difference. The scientific basis behind this trick is that heat can relax the tightened muscles around the head and neck, to alleviate the pain. Cold packs can however numb the areas, which are painful. Apart from this, an cold eye mask may provide some relief as well.
- Ginger Root
Have you ever tried chewing on a piece of ginger? Ginger root can help relieve the pain of an intense headache and can also alleviate some of the nausea that come along with the pain. Ginger root is believed to affect how our body handles inflammation by reducing prostaglandins, the chemicals in our body which signals pain to the brain. To use ginger root, make it into a hot tea or just chew on a piece.
If all else fails, some medications may alleviate the pain. Just about any over-the-counter pain medication, such as paracetamol, ibuprofen, or naproxen can do the trick. For those with severe, recurring headaches, stronger forms of pain medication can be given, but this can have lead to serious side effects such as withdrawal and rebound headaches if used for too long.
As noted above, a small dose of caffeine taken with a paracetamol can often offer much better pain relief. Caffeine can potentiate analgesic medications when taken together to offer some much needed relief from that pesky migraine.